Archives for October 2018 | Integrative functional medicine blog

"Any fool can Know. The point is to understand" - Albert Einstein

Salt is Killing your good gut bacteria

Here are some product links.

Blood pressure cuff link -
Get an arm one, not a wrist one. They are too inconsistent

Glycyrrhiza (licorice root) -

Spore based probiotics -

Other Probiotics -

Enter Promo Code “DFH28841” for 10% this one.

A high-salt diet has long been connected with cardiovascular disease. I should say a high salt, processed food diet has been linked with cardiovascular disease.

Too much sodium in the bloodstream causes fluid retention, which makes the heart work harder to move the extra volume of blood. This can stiffen blood vessels and lead to high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, and kidney disease.

However, a recent
study shows a high-salt diet also raises blood pressure by damaging healthy gut bacteria. This destruction increases the inflammation that contributes to high blood pressure and the development of autoimmune disease — when the immune system attacks tissue in the body. Common autoimmune diseases include Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, and many many others.

You may be asking, why does salt do this? Here is a very simple visualization.
Did you ever pour salt on a snail or slug when you were a kid? Yeah, not very nice, but you remember what happened to the snail right?

Mice. The study shows that mice fed a high-salt diet killed off beneficial Lactobacillus murinus bacteria in the gut. It also raised blood pressure and activated pro-inflammatory immune cells.

The mice also showed signs of encephalomyelitis, an autoimmune condition similar to multiple sclerosis in humans.

When the mice were given supplementary
Lactobacillus, their blood pressure and inflammation came down.

Humans. The humans in the study experienced similar results. Consuming a high-salt diet for two weeks killed off their Lactobacillus bacteria and increased inflammation.
However, if they took probiotics for a week before starting a high-salt diet, their
Lactobacillus levels and blood pressure remained normal. That is some pretty cool stuff!

Can gut microbes protect against a high-salt diet?
While the study showed probiotics can protect against a high-salt diet, the researchers cautioned that taking probiotics cannot protect you from the damages of a high-salt, fast-food diet.

Manage your salt intake with good daily habits
While the average American consumes a whopping 3400 milligrams of sodium a day, the USDA recommends no more than 2300mg of sodium a day — about a teaspoon of table salt. That is still a lot of salt.  

However, some people are more sensitive to the effects of salt than others, so it's recommended that middle-aged and older adults should limit intake to 1500 mg of sodium a day.

Adopt these habits to lower your salt intake:

  • Read food labels.
  • Choose foods low in sodium.
  • Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Consume foods that are rich in potassium, such as leafy green vegetables and fruits from vines. Potassium can help blunt the effects of sodium on blood pressure. The recommended intake of potassium for adolescents and adults is 4700 mg/day. And most of us get nowhere near that amount. And if you are on certain medications then you may need even more.
  • Flavor food with pepper, herbs, and spices instead of salt.
  • Choose unsalted snacks with savory flavors.

Build good gut bacteria to protect your health

The digestive tract is home to roughly four pounds of bacteria — your gut microbiome. Some strains are helpful, some are harmful. Both have roles to play, but it's important to support your "good" bacteria for healthy immune function, brain function, and mood, and to avoid leaky gut, SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth), and systemic inflammation that leads to autoimmunity and other chronic health conditions.

And Remember, when taking probiotics that is not just how many
probiotics you have that is important. It's also how many different types you have that is equally important. I recommend patients switch every 2-3 months to get more biodiversity.

It's easy to support a healthy gut with these simple habits:

  • Eat plentiful and varied produce; this is the best way to support a healthy gut environment.
  • Supplement with probiotics; There are lot of different ones, including spore based. Check out my links. They work best in a gut environment that’s already being supported with plenty of fiber from fruits and veggies.
  • Avoid excess sugar.
  • Get regular exercise.
  • Drink plenty of filtered water.

  • What if I have low blood pressure?
  • Adequate blood pressure is necessary to push blood carrying oxygen and nutrients into your tissues. Chronically low blood pressure can result in reduced brain function and neurodegeneration as Alzheimers, dementia, Parkinsons, and tremors.
  • Low blood pressure is also often a sign of chronic stress, adrenal fatigue, autoimmunity, or chronic infection. Check out my conditions page in the link below.
  • If you have low blood pressure you need to get it up as close as you can to 120/80.
  • Salt can help raise blood pressure. While a high-salt diet is not recommended for most of the population, people with chronically low blood pressure may need to consume more than the recommended daily amount of salt. It's a matter of experimentation to see what level of salt intake is appropriate for you without raising symptoms of inflammation.
  • Glycyrrhiza. Extracted from licorice root, this natural compound increases the hormone aldosterone, helping to retain sodium and raise low blood pressure. You can use a liposomal cream version or an oral licorice root extract.
  • When you work with salt and glycyrrhiza to raise your blood pressure, you will need to purchase a good home-use blood pressure cuff. Measure your blood pressure throughout the day and experiment with
  • dosages. A return to normal blood pressure typically results in a dramatic increase in overall energy and brain function.

    If you salt your foods, take your probiotics.

    I'm Dr. Craig Mortensen
    Be healthy, be happy!

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    How safe/strong are cell phone and rounter EMF signals

    Welcome back to our exciting series on EMF’s. What are they? Are they safe? How much do we get exposed to? And what can we do about it.

    So far we have looked at some measurements on a hike in to the hills to see how strong those cell phone towers are and those power lines. We have also looked at the EMF meter that we have been using (see the link below), we looked at what many parts of the world do to limit EMFs and today we are going to be looking at how strong are those EMF/cell signals coming from your phone and your router.

    In one of my previous posts I briefly mentioned that the “experts” recommend that our EMF exposure be no higher that 50 mv. As you may have seen, that can be a difficult thing to achieve in todays modern and infinitely connected world. But, it is possible.

    So here is what I did today. I took my router and measured the EMF signal at various lengths with a tape measure. Lets take a look at what that graph looks like. When the meter was touching the antenna I got a reading of 20V/M. Compared to the reading I got standing next to a cell phone tower its even stronger than the cell tower, which gave a reading anywhere from 10-12 V/M. The difference is how strong the signal remains as the distance increases. As the distance increased the strength of the signal quickly dropped. Quite exponentially in fact. But once I got to a certain distance and took into account all the wall that the signal was going through, I was not able to get a reading below 500mv/m anywhere in my house with the wifi on.
    So….What I will be doing now it hard wiring everything in my house. I’m just not comfortable with me or my family being exposed to those levels.

    On to the next test.

    First I compared the signal from an iPhone 6 and an iPhone plus. The difference was staggering. Go technology! I guess?

    With both phone in sleep/standby mode one the iPhone 6 I got a reading of 900mv/m. With the iPhone 8 plus I was getting a reading of 6V/m. And keep in mind that these readings are with the wifi off so they don’t interfere. An interesting thing that I noticed was that whenever I “woke up” the phone or opened a new app or new page, etc. there was a giant spike in the EMF levels. On average they would spike to 14-15V/m.

    So here are the results of the EMF distance test with the iPhone 8 plus:

    While I was doing this I had a youtube video streaming in order to maintain a signal coming to the phone.

    Take a look at our baseline, which was 6V/M with the meter right next to the phone.
    As I took measurements the strength drastically decreased dropping to 800mv at 1 foot, 250 at 2 feet down to 50mv at 5 feet.

    The moral of the story is that routers and cell phones are basically the same as a cell phone tower, except we are attached to them. The good news is that if we move away from them (easier said than done) the possible damaging effects is drastically reduced.

    I hope you have enjoyed this edition of Dr. Craigs soap box rantings.
    Hopefully you’re at least a little bit scared.
    Stay tuned for more and subscribe to my channel. Follow the link in the description to download a free pdf of the graphs and readings described in this video.

    Next up in the series is product reviews and simple things you can do to decrease your exposure.

    P.S. - Bonus footage!

    Ok, not really footage, but info. For those of us that don’t like microwaves, yes I tested that too. Here is another reason to use It as little as possible. With our newer microwave running and holding the meter about 6 inches away (I was too scared to get closer) I got a reading of 25V/M. As I ran away, at about 6-7 feet away I was still getting 3V/M.

    As a comparison, at the same distance the router was at 1400mv.

    Ok. Now Im done. For real. Thats it. At least until next time.
    How do you like my hat?

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    Gobble food delivery service review

    This video is about Gobble food service. Gobble food delivery service offers packaged and pre portioned ingredients to do all of your own cooking from the comfort of your home. Kristen (Dr. Craig's wife) discusses Gobble and compares it to other food prep services or food delivery services. subscribe to our channel to stay up to date and get notified when new ones are available.

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    How safe are EMf's really? Maybe not all that safe!

    Have you ever wondered how the magic of cell phones work? or how about how your router, radio, or all your blue tooth products work. Is it magic or is it something else?

    Or how about a more important question. How does all of this affect my health? Or does it? How much is healthy? How much as I getting exposed to? Do I need to do something about it? Is it hurting my kids?

    Stay tuned, we are going to discuss this and more in this hotly and often undiscussed topic.

    So what exactly are EMFs? Are they harmful to you? We are going to discuss that is just a minute. But first let impart to you some of the ways that EMFs may be harmful, There are lots of studies that demonstrate some benefits and negative side effects of EMFs.

    The bad/negative side effects of EMFs have been reported to be:
    Skin problems,
    High blood pressure
    Endocrine disrupters
    GI issues
    Memory issues
    Speech issues
    And many others.

    Some of the more serious effects include contributing or even causing cancer, altering the calcium channels in for body damaging DNA, altering the BBB (blood brain barrier) can you say leaky gut? Sleep issues, skin issues, fertility problems, and weight gain. Yep your wifi might be making you fat. Other than the fact that it makes you sit on your but surfing the net all day long instead of getting out and DOING SOMETHING.

    And last but not least there is evidence that EMFs can damage your gut bacteria. Which considering the fact that every living organism is affected in some way or another by EMFs isn’t really all that surprising. You can see a great example of this if you google “ants and emf's” and see what pops up.

    Seems to me that just about every condition I see in my office can at least be influenced by EMFs.

    Don't even get me started on EMFs and kids. Kids are more sensitive and susceptible to everything. Why would EMFs be any different. Yet many parents use electronic devices as a babysitter, entertainer, educator or best friend for their child.


    EMF stand for electromagnetic fields. Here is a diagram of where different types of wavelengths fall.

    Now let me be clear. Im not here to convince you that EMFs are bad. In fact, many different types of emf’s are often touted as being healing, such as PEMFs that are supposed to work WITH your bodies natural emf frequencies and speed healing. These are even FDA approved for certain conditions such as increasing bone healing after fractures, depression, and migraines to name a few.

    But we are not talking about P-EMFs. We are talking about EMFs and if they are harmful or not.
    Again, Im not going to try to convince you that they are bad, or not, to be honest Im not an expert so I cant say for sure. But, what I can say for sure is that Im not convinced of their safety. And neither is most everyone else when it really comes down to it.

    They just wont say it. Out loud anyway.

    But take a look at this!

    Here are some screen shots from some really big companies ( the biggest in the world in fact) that are basically covering their asses just in case.



    World health organization

    In fact, there are many countries in the world that have put very strict restriction on when, where and whom can be exposed to EMFs and how much they consider safe.

    Here are some things to consider. Other countries have come the conclusion that EMFs “MAY” not be safe and they should prob take some precautions. Yet the US keeps pushing ahead and the latest and greatest (and more powerful) 5-G wireless network is coming. So let's take a look.

    In 2002, Israel includes warning labels on cell phones
    2013 - Belgium follow suit and warns citizens when purchasing a cell phone to reduce their exposure
    2015 - France requires the SAR value of all cell phone to be labelled on the phone. We will talk about the SAR value in another video - check it out, It pretty eye opening.
    2015 - Canada almost passes a bill stating cell phones may be carcinogenic. Good try Canada, maybe next time. I think its a good idea.
    2016 the City of Berkeley in ca requires labels on phones that state “might cause cancer, keep away from children and pregnant women, everyone else we don't care about” Ok. That last part wasn’t included, but now I kind of feel uncared about. Whats up Berkeley? Am I too manly to get hurt by little old EMFs?

    Here are some other countries way ahead of us. In Vancouver Canada cell phone towers cant be installed within 1,000 feet of schools or childcare.

    In India cell phone towers were removed around schools, playgrounds, colleges, and hospitals.
    In Greece and New Zealand cell phone antennas cant be installed around schools or nurseries.

    Yet in the US we have no though about were we put up these cell towers. Often the places that shouldn’t have them, ie school, park and playgrounds get them the most because they can hide them in the trees and there is lots of space to work around.

    And last but not least had you heard of the Telecommunications act of 1996? This is much like the legislature that prohibits pharmaceutical companies being held liable for injuries due to vaccines.

    It basically says that they are not held liable for health injuries as a result of EMFs and that no health or environmental concern can interfere with the placement of telecom equipment of cell towers and antenna.

    That seems a little scary to me, but….hey, what do I know?

    So there you have it. Some of the not super specific reasons why it may be time to rethink the whole EMF/cell phone issue. It’s not as benign as you think. In fact, Im convinced that this is prob one of the major things that contributes to many ailments I see in my office. It may not be the sole cause, rarely is that the case with anything. But it most certainly seems to be part of the puzzle.

    Stay tune. So far in my series on EMF. We have taken some measurements to see how high some levels of EMFs get, what is a SAR and why you should care about it and we will also be discussing some different techniques and products you can use to start reducing your exposure to these (Im going to say mostly harmful) electromagnetic frequencies.

    Go get grounded and turn off that router.

    I’m dr. Craig Mortensen

    Be Healthy, be happy.

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    Initial unboxing of the EMF meter - you need one of these

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    Testing EMF levels of Cell phone Antenas and powerlines

    Dr. Craig Mortensen and his wife go on a hike up into the hills to go explore and measure what different electromagnetic levels are reached when measuring cell phone antennas and power lines. You will be surprised at what they find and just how much EMFs you are exposed to all the time.

    You can view the EMF meter that Dr. Mortensen used in his testing here.

    Shop EMF Meters at

    In addition check out my other blog on the initial unboxing of the EMF meter.

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